Security Prisoner
Security Detainee
Administrative Detainee
Total
18.1.2010

HaMoked severely protests the conduct of the Israel Security Agency which harasses and threatens Palestinians wishing to study abroad: Exerting pressure on the protected population to collaborate is a flagrant violation of international humanitarian law

On December 12, 2009, HaMoked sent a letter of complaint to the State Attorney’s Office following a series of harassments and threats by the Israel Security Agency (ISA) targeted at two students, whose cases are pending before the High Court of Justice. In the first case, the ISA threatened that it would not allow the petitioner to travel abroad if he did not collaborate; in the second case it “made do” with summoning the petitioner to a conversation in which it was made clear to him that he was under the watchful eye of the ISA.
 
HaMoked filed the first of the two petitions after the state refused to allow the petitioner, a student from the West Bank, to travel abroad in order to study, and all his attempts to contact the authorities to inquire about the refusal and contest it were to no avail. Following submission of the petition, the state pledged that if no new information justifying the continued ban was collected for a year, the objection to his travel would be lifted. After a year had passed, the petitioner filed, as agreed, a new application at the District Coordination Office to have the ban against him lifted. He received no response for over a year. In December 2009, the petitioner began receiving telephone calls from a person who introduced himself as “captain Itay” and threatened him that if he did not collaborate with security officials, he would be unable to continue his studies abroad. In the last call the “captain” clarified that he knew the petitioner was represented by HaMoked, however, the matter of his travel abroad “depends only on the ISA and his own decision”. The “captain” did not stop there and threatened that he would send soldiers who would arrest the petitioner in his home. The next morning, a number of men who introduced themselves as “Palestinian Authority security personnel” came to the petitioner’s home and took him to offices in Tulkarem. He was released from there four days later. HaMoked sent a letter of complaint to the State Attorney’s Office following the incident. On the day the letter was sent, the petitioner received a call from an ISA representative who informed him that the preclusion to his travel had been lifted.
 
HaMoked filed the second petition after the petitioner received no response to his application to travel abroad for the purpose of studies and his studies were due to begin. Two days before the scheduled hearing in the petition, the State Attorney’s Office notified that a decision had been made to lift the security preclusion in the petitioner’s case and allow him to travel abroad. A few days later – with the petition still pending – a person who introduced himself as “captain Ayman” called the petitioner and summoned him to a “conversation” within an hour. In this “conversation”, the ISA representative presented the lifting of the ban as a gesture on his part and clarified to the petitioner that he was being watched and was expected to act accordingly.
 
HaMoked is highly critical of the ISA’s conduct in these two cases – a conduct of threats and harassment. International law strictly prohibits military and security forces from exerting pressure on the civilian population to collaborate with them – all the more so when the case involves a person waiting to realize his fundamental rights.
mail@hamoked.org.il (02) 627 1698   (02) 627 6317

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